Linitis plastica


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Linitis plastica, also known as Brinton's disease or leather bottle stomach, is a morphological variant of diffuse (or infiltrating) stomach cancer.

Causes of linitis plastica could be lye ingestion or metastatic infiltration of the stomach, particularly breast and lung carcinoma. [1] It is not associated with H. pylori infection or chronic gastritis. The risk factors are undefined, except for rare inherited mutations in E-cadherin, which are found in about 50% of diffuse-type gastric carcinomas. [2]

This cancer (and most other stomach cancers) is more common in Asian countries, particularly Japan.




Endoscopic image of linitis plastica, a type of stomach cancer where the entire stomach is invaded, leading to a leather bottle-like appearance with blood coming out of it.

Diffuse Stomach Cancer is characterized by the presence of poorly differentiated tumor cells.

The appearance of the stomach is like a "leather bottle".[3] It is characterized by a thick, rigid stomach wall caused by diffuse infiltration of tumor cells and extensive fibrosis.

Diarrhea may be a presenting symptom.

Notable cases

Napoleon Bonaparte and many members of his family died from this type of cancer, although it is also believed that he may have died from arsenic poisoning.[4]


  1. ^ Robbins Basic Pathology, 8th Edition
  2. ^ Robbins Basic Pathology, 8th Edition
  3. ^ linitis plastica at Dorland's Medical Dictionary
  4. ^ Bevan S, Houlston RS (1999). "Genetic predisposition to gastric cancer". QJM : monthly journal of the Association of Physicians 92 (1): 5–10. PMID 10209666. 

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